On this episode of People’s Party, Talib Kweli and Jasmin Leigh converse with long-time friend and Kweli-collaborator Ras Kass. They discuss the MC’s legacy as a lyrical heavyweight on the west coast and he reflects on how he feels about his song “Nature Of A Threat” almost 25 years later. The trio also talks about the latest Ras Kass album “Soul On Ice 2” and how the original Soul on Ice album is more relevant today than ever.Later, Ras talks about working with Dr. Dre while dealing with shady A&Rs. He details serving 21 months on a D.U.I. charge and what it was like for him being locked up. He also shares his experiences working on hood movie classics like “I Got The Hook Up” and outlines the emcees that had the most impact on his own rhyme style. Finally, Ras calls out the Royce da 5’9″‘s album “Book of Ryan” for being one of the best albums he has heard in years. The entire conversation is often funny, peppered with surprises, and rich with insight as two of “your favorite MC’s favorite MCs” chop it up.
1:50 — Ras explains the origins and meaning of his name
3:46 — Talib reminds Ras that he had told him he didn’t like him when they had first met. Ras tells us why.
6:24 — Ras explains why “Nas – N.Y. State Of Mind” is the first perfect rap song.
10:21 — Ras’ take on the rise of N.W.A. and how the gangsta rap movement dictated the market for west coast hip-hop moving forward.
12:34 — He tells how people are learning years later the true meaning of his lyrics. He reflects about his approach on the song “Nature of a Threat”.
16:05 — Ras on his latest album “Soul On Ice 2”
18:51 — Ras on the only things he wanted out of becoming an emcee.
20:20 — Ras talks about how he wished more listeners still appreciated the craft of lyricism. How the public has been programmed to be consumers over connoisseurs.
26:43 — Ras explains why he’s chosen to do so many collaborations over the years.
30:18 — Talib asks Ras about his relationship with his father as a police officer.
37:23 — Ras debates perceived race/class hierarchy in America.
41:50 — Ras tells about his experiences working with Dr. Dre and at the same time dealing with a shady A&R.
48:15 — Ras’ take on crowdsourcing albums, and how the music industry is evolving.
51:24 — Talib, Jasmine and Ras extensively discuss black ownership in America.
55:17 — Ras on why he served 21 months for a D.U.I. charge, and the worst things about being locked up.
1:01:47 — Ras talks about America being an evil country right now, and how we all need to own it.
1:04:20 — Talib recaps his story about a strange experience hanging at a Billionaire’s house that ended up being a known friend of Jeffrey Epstein.
1:06:03 — Ras tells about growing up with his cousin, rapper Bleu Davinci, his family dynamic, and working with him and DJ Pooh.
1:09:56 — Ras on his affiliations with members of the infamous Black Mafia Family.
1:13:12 — Ras outlines his experiences in the LA movie industry, including being in “I Got The Hook Up”.
1:18:10 — Talib asks Ras who are the emcees that truly influenced his style.
1:21:40 — Ras talks about Royce da 5’9″‘s album “Book of Ryan” being a prime example of an album carrying the culture forward.